Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Mission 8: Give foregiveness, Professor Carol, YAC meeting-Blood Drive

Reflect on Yesterday's Mission
Before moving on to your eighth mission, take a moment to reflect on yesterday’s mission. What was the hardest part of talking to someone new? Some people make new friends quickly, others need time to get used to someone new. What do you like or dislike about meeting new people? What qualities do you look for in a new friend? Discuss these questions as a class, or break into small groups.
Your eighth mission, Agents, is to give yourself forgiveness.

Think of a situation in your life recently in which you felt hurt and connected your hurt feelings to something someone else had done. You may have even blamed this other person for your hurt feelings, saying something like, "You made me mad!" Sometimes, even just remembering what happened can make you feel hurt all over again. In fact, did that happen to you now?

Take time today to notice that the hurt feelings you experienced or are experiencing exist inside YOU. That's right, the feelings come from what you are thinking and remembering in the moments in which you have them, whether this is two months ago or even now. But here's the catch: you can learn to control your feelings, rather than having them control you. It just takes practice. To do this, first recognize what you are feeling, and maybe even give your feelings names like sadness or anger. It might help to talk to someone you trust about what you are feeling.

Next, try to identify if you are blaming someone else for what you are feeling. If so, remember that you can control your feelings because they are yours. And you are probably having them because something didn't happen the way you think it should. Maybe a friend said something mean about you. That's not what any of us want to have happen!

This is where forgiveness comes in. It's been shown that true forgiveness takes place when people let go of their hurt feelings and replace them with positive feelings. This doesn't mean forgetting what happened, no. It's about a decision you make to see the situation differently. Maybe your friend was having a hard day or wanted something you have. It's not that they really believe what they said about you. It was just the easiest way they knew to express their unhappiness.

A really common response to feeling hurt is to want another person to feel hurt. That's called trying to get revenge and when we do it, we just make situations worse. Learning to focus instead on how to be happy and live a good life is the best way to let go of hurt feelings and practice forgiveness.
Agents, remember... As you fulfill your mission, share your experiences on theCompassion Report Map! Your report inspires others, amplifying the power of your compassion and generosity!

Going Deeper:

There is a wise saying that goes "Hurting people hurt people." It means that when our feelings are hurt, we are more likely to be unkind, grumpy, or snappy toward others. Understanding that about ourselves can help us understand our friends and family members when they are behaving this way. We can then let go of the cycle of hurt feelings by saying or doing something nice. That's how you practice forgiveness.

For Teachers/Parents/Mentors:


All 11 Missions are available to be viewed here. Use this sneak peak as a way to plan ahead, or to review previous or missed missions.

Advent Day 10: Noël

By Professor Carol on Dec 08, 2015 04:00 am
Gilles Couteau - (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Gilles Couteau – (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
For many of us, Noël is a word splashed in glitter across Christmas cards, banners, and ornaments. But it also means a specific type of French Christmas Carol. Let’s take a closer look.
Noël comes from the Old French word for “Christmas Season” (nael) which, in turn, comes from the Latin for birth (natalis). That’s a lot of etymology, but it explains why we hear the wordNoël sung as a refrain in the familiar carol The First Noel. Think of it as a joyous exclamation, like Alleluia.
The very sound Noël conveys the glory of our Savior’s birth! As an expression of Christmas joy, the word has been used since the 15th century, sometimes within church music, but more often in popular songs, chants, and dances.
As for its musical definition, a Noël was a song of popular character, not part of the formal order of worship (liturgy). It had “strophic” or verse form. By the 16th century, French manuscripts contain a variety of Christmas songs called Noëls, including many popular secular songs refitted with Christmasy words. There’s early evidence of French families singing Noëlson Christmas Eve, both in the church and on the streets.
By the 17th and 18th centuries, collections of Noëls were available for people to buy. And composers took the tunes and turned them into dazzling pieces for keyboards, particularly for organ. Around the time of J.S. Bach (early 1700s), it was popular to turn a favorite Noël into a set of organ variations, so that the beloved tune could sound over and over, with ever-more intricate melodic and rhythmic decoration.
Not surprisingly, versions of these Noels for other instruments sprouted up too. They kept a rustic tone, featuring oboes and horns, or instruments we’re not as familiar with today, such asmusettes, or the vielles (hurdy-gurdy). The idea was to evoke the pastoral, or idyllic countryside. We might call it “shepherdy” music today. The pastorale or rustic quality of these songs, their simple but powerful melodies, and the lilting quality that matches the color of the French language combine to give the Noël its charm. With practice, they are easy to distinguish from German, Italian, or English Christmas Carols.
If you want to hear a Classic French Noël, try Il est ne, le divin Enfant (He is born, the Divine Child). The words are mid-19th century, but the tune dates back to the 18th century. You’ll find lots of versions of it on the internet, such as this one by the Vienna Boys’ Choir:
You might be surprised to hear it at this relaxed tempo, but stylistically, that’s appropriate. Nonetheless, the sparkly quick tempos we hear in most recordings probably will be likely to capture a small child’s ear.
So enjoy the rich tradition that lies just behind you, every time you see that word Noël. And if you hear a jaunty, dance-like Christmas tune, it might just be a Noël.
The post Advent Day 10: Noël appeared first on Professor Carol.

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